Wa, Nov. 20, GNA – Five political party aspirants in outlining their plans and strategies to address the problems in Agriculture, Health, Education and Employment, at a forum in Wa, have assured the electorate of their commitment to peaceful elections on December 7.
They are candidates of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Progressive Peoples Party (PPP), the Convention Peoples Party (CPP), National Democratic Party (NDP) and the Ghana Consolidated Peoples Party (GCPP).
They reaffirmed that politics was the marketing of ideas and policies and not the use of physical strength to subdue your opponents.
They said there would be no other country for Ghanaians should politics be used to destroy Ghana so they would collectively protect it.
They, therefore, urged Ghanaians to be mindful about the lessons from neighbouring Ivory Coast when their elections resulted in war that brought untold hardships to the people, while their economic activities and infrastructure were destroyed.
The aspirants, however, called for fairness and transparency in the processes and issues of the elections to facilitate peaceful elections, as well as to sustain Ghana’s democratic credentials.
Mr. Tahiru Issahaku Moomin of the NPP, explaining his solutions for Agriculture, said he would mobilise the youth in the Wa Municipality to embrace the NPP’s “One village One dam policy and the implementation of the ‘Agricultural mechanisation policy’ to boost production.
He said it was the intention of the NPP to waive taxes on agricultural machinery and other inputs to ensure the availability of equipment and machinery, as well as fertilisers, to encourage farmers to undertake large scale agricultural ventures to for both the local and export markets.
The NPP would also intensify the training of Agricultural Extension Officers to help provide improved technologies to farmers.
“I will ensure that farmers in my constituency benefit immensely from these policies and programmes if elected as a Member of Parliament,” he said.
On Health, Mr. Moomin said he would use part of his share of the District Assemblies’ Common Fund to sponsor students to health institutions to be trained as midwives to come and help man some of the Community Based Health and Planning Services in the communities.
That, he said, would help reduce maternal and child mortality, while efforts would also be made to provide equipment to health facilities to enhance quality healthcare delivery.
“An Educational Endowment Fund would be established to cater for the needs of brilliant but needy students and also provide teaching and learning materials to support schools in the area,” he said.
Mr. Moomin said he would identify youth groups and attach them to artisans and mechanists to learn from them and establish their businesses on completion of their training.
Mr. James Sohimwenye, the PPP Parliamentary Candidate, said his party had a programme to rehabilitate existing dams and he would make sure that farmers utilised the dams for vegetable and crops production to enhance livelihoods.
“My first priority is to encourage people in the communities to embrace the domestication policy of the PPP – that is we grow and eat what we grow,” he said. “ Senior High Schools will be fed with produce from local farmers.”
Mr. Sohimwenye said he would lobby the Government in power and agricultural-oriented non-governmental organisations to supply more farm inputs, especially tractors, insecticides and technologies to farmers in the area.
On Health, he said, the preventive aspect of diseases, especially personal and environmental hygiene, would be pursued in the communities to secure people against diseases.
The PPP candidate said he would also encourage the enforcement of the constitutional provision on “Free and Compulsory Education” in the communities to ensure that all children attended at least basic school.
Mr. Sohimwenye said he would also lobby the international community, civil society organisations and non-governmental organisations to establish projects in the communities to help provide employment for the youth.
Mr. Issahaque Suleman, the CPP Candidate, said he would encourage the mechanisation of boreholes to provide water for small-scale farmers to undertake dry season farming.
“I will also liaise with financial institutions to grant soft-loans to farmers in the communities to increase crops production and incomes,” he said.
Mr. Suleman said he would also lobby for tax reduction on teachers’ salaries, and the building of houses for teachers, which they could acquire through mortgage.
Some incentive packages would be provided to health workers who distinguished themselves in their professional duties, he said, to boost their morale to promote quality healthcare services.
The NDP Candidate, Mr. Seidu Sadiq Abubakar, said he would promote the establishment of moringa and cashew plantations in the communities for farmers to earn higher incomes.
“I will encourage the Government to acquire lands, provide some agricultural extension training skills on modern technologies to farmers free of charge, and supply free certified seeds to farmers in my constituency,” he said .
“I will encourage home gardening systems in every household to cater for the vegetable needs of the families to reduce the financial burdens on them.”
Mr. Edward Kuuyine Yelyaga of the GCPP said he would promote mango plantations to the farmers to supplement their nutritional deficiencies and enhance their incomes.
He also touted the GCPP’s policy on domestication, saying, it was the surest way of putting Ghana on the industrialisation path and it must embraced.
The Wa Municipal Office of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) jointly organised the Inter-Parliamentary Candidates forum with the Ghana News Agency, with sponsorship from the European Union.
The National Democratic Congress’ candidate, Dr Rashid Hassan Pelpuo did not attend the forum